Australia’s Barron Entertainment secured a significant chunk of financing from Australia-based Capital Finance, guaranteeing a minimum US$61.3 million in production funds over five years, translating into US$12.2 million per year.
Paul Barron, managing director of the prodco, says the increase will double Barron’s production output, though he expects it could also triple. ‘Our key area of interest is in expanding our children’s and family production slate,’ Barron says. The planned slate includes dramatic TV shows and feature films, as well as animation, an area new to the company. Barron says the prodco is testing the water with its 26 x one-minute 3-D toon Hoota and Snoz. A co-pro with Blue Rocket Productions of Queensland, Australia, RTV and the Pacific Film and Television Commission, Hoota goes into production this month.
Barron is also working on Tiger Tiger, a mystery/adventure live-action series with Australia’s Ten Network. The 13 x half-hour series is geared to the eight to 14 set and centers around 15-year-old Samantha and her 11-year-old brother Jamie, who are sent to live with their mother, a vet who works at a zoo. Sam develops a telepathic connection with Garang, a female tiger, and takes on big cat powers. She can sniff out a hamburger at 70 paces and sees well in the dark-that sort of thing. The brother and sister also find the time to lend a hand to a world-renowned geneticist who is trying to save animals from extinction.
In addition to Tiger, Barron is delivering another 26 eps of its latest comedy/adventure offering Chuck Finn to Seven. Last year, Barron also produced two 13 x half-hour live-action series for the eight to 12 set: Fast Tracks and Driven Crazy.